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David B. McCall was an advertising executive and humanitarian. He was the originator of the idea for the children's educational television series Schoolhouse Rock. The David B. McCall Papers span the years 1939-1999, with the bulk documenting the years 1980-1994, and are comprised of clippings, correspondence, business reports, photographs, scrapbooks, speeches and writings, videocassettes, audio tapes and phonograph records. In particular, three main areas of McCall's career are represented: as an advertising executive and partner in agencies such as Young & Rubicam, Ogilvy Benson & Mather, McCaffrey & McCall, David J. Mahoney, Inc., the Sawyer Miller Group, and Shepardson Stern and Kaminsky; as a corporate director for the Hunter Fan Company, Save the Children, and two local radio broadcasting corporations, among others; and as a humanitarian involved with organizations such as the Committee for the Support of Roe v. Wade, CARE, and Refugees International. In addition, there is a substantial body of McCall's speeches and writings that reflect both the wide range of his professional and personal interests and commitments as well as his status as a public intellectual in high demand, as well as a number of files containing correspondence, clippings and articles concerning David Ogilvy, McCall's mentor in advertising. Major advertising campaigns represented in this collection include Mercedes Benz of North America, North American Philips, Life magazine, the American Can Company, Lever Brothers Company, and the Zippo Manufacturing Company, along with public relations work for such clients as the National Football League, Puerto Rico Telephone Company (PRTC), and the Regional Bell Operating Companies. Major humanitarian issues documented in the collection include the Unsell protest movement against the war in Vietnam, tobacco advertising aimed at children, land mine removal, refugee welfare, and support of abortion rights. McCall was also involved in political campaigns for a number of notable candidates, such as John Lindsay (New York), Harvey Gannt (North Carolina), George Kevarian (Massachusetts), Ramón Mitra (Philippines) and Mario Vargas Llosa (Peru). While McCall is recognized as the originator of the idea behind the popular children's educational television series Schoolhouse Rock!, the collection contains very little documentation concerning that project apart from a copy of the original soundtrack.

The David B. McCall Papers span the years 1939-1999, with the bulk documenting the years 1980-1994, and are comprised of clippings, correspondence, business reports, photographs, scrapbooks, speeches and writings, videocassettes, audio tapes and phonograph records. In particular, three main areas of McCall's career are represented: as an advertising executive and partner in agencies such as Young & Rubicam, Ogilvy Benson & Mather, McCaffrey & McCall, David J. Mahoney, Inc., the Sawyer Miller Group, and Shepardson Stern and Kaminsky; as a corporate director for the Hunter Fan Company, Save the Children, and two local radio broadcasting corporations, among others; and as a humanitarian involved with organizations such as the Committee for the Support of Roe v. Wade, CARE, and Refugees International. In addition, there is a substantial body of McCall's speeches and writings that reflect both the wide range of his professional and personal interests and commitments as well as his status as a public intellectual in high demand, as well as a number of files containing correspondence, clippings and articles concerning David Ogilvy, McCall's mentor in advertising. Major advertising campaigns represented in this collection include Mercedes Benz of North America, North American Philips, Life magazine, the American Can Company, Lever Brothers Company, and the Zippo Manufacturing Company, along with public relations work for such clients as the National Football League, Puerto Rico Telephone Company (PRTC), and the Regional Bell Operating Companies. Major humanitarian issues documented in the collection include the "Unsell" protest movement against the war in Vietnam, tobacco advertising aimed at children, land mine removal, refugee welfare, and support of abortion rights. McCall was also involved in political campaigns for a number of notable candidates, such as John Lindsay (New York), Harvey Gannt (North Carolina), George Kevarian (Massachusetts), Ramón Mitra (Philippines) and Mario Vargas Llosa (Peru). While McCall is recognized as the originator of the idea behind the popular children's educational television series Schoolhouse Rock!, the collection contains very little documentation concerning that project apart from a copy of the original soundtrack.

The collection is organized into 12 series that broadly outline the sequence of McCall's business and humanitarian activities: the Biographical and Personal Materials Series, the Ogilvy & Mather Series, the McCaffrey & McCall Series, the Radio Stations Series, the Sawyer Miller Group Series, the Hunter Fan Company Series, the Shepardson, Stern & Kaminsky Series, the Refugees International Series, the Speeches Series, the Writings Series, and the Portfolio Series. In addition, non-print materials have been removed to the Audiovisual Materials Series. Large-format print materials have been removed from their original series locations and relocated to Oversize Materials locations; these items have been cross-referenced to the points in the body of the collection from which they were removed.

The Biographical and Personal Materials Series contains materials relating to McCall's childhood and family life, and includes correspondence, photographs, biographical sketches, resumes and obituary notices. The Ogilvy & Mather Series includes correspondence and articles pertaining to the agency, along with profiles and tributes to agency founder David Ogilvy and correspondence between Ogilvy and McCall. The McCaffrey & McCall Series includes correspondence, corporate publications and client files. Legal documents that detail McCall's initial investment and employment in the C.J. Laroche & Co. agency, which was eventually renamed McCaffrey & McCall, are included. Major clients include Mercedes-Benz of North America, the New York Zoological Society, and Save the Children. The agency was also involved in the political campaign of New York Mayor John Lindsay. The Radio Stations Series includes correspondence, periodic reports and profit-and-loss statements for the 790 Communications Corporation and the 1340 Broadcasting Corporation, radio broadcasting corporations in which McCaffrey & McCall had invested, and in which McCall remained involved after retiring from the agency. The Sawyer Miller Group Series contains administrative records, correspondence and client files. Sawyer Miller was instrumental in helping the telecommunications industry after the breakup of the Bell system into regional operating companies. Other clients included the National Football League and the Puerto Rico Telephone Company, along with a number of political candidates.

The Hunter Fan Company Series consists primarily of reports pertaining to periodic meetings of the Board of Directors in addition to some information on marketing strategies and advertising campaigns. The Shepardson, Stern & Kaminsky Series contains administrative files and correspondence relating to internal operations and political advertising, as well as files documenting McCall's advocacy work on a tobacco-free initiative aimed at children. The Refugees International Series documents McCall's involvement in a number of humanitarian efforts undertaken by Refugees International, including relief for refugee children and land mine eradication. The series includes correspondence, travel itineraries and trip journals kept by McCall, as well as printed materials from Refugees International and other humanitarian organizations. The Speeches Series includes texts of speeches, talks, and commencement addresses given by McCall, along with a small collection of speeches given by others. There is also a set of "speech files" that contain clippings, writing fragments, and other materials used to compose or plan speeches. In a few cases, speeches are accompanied by supporting materials and relevant correspondence. The Writings Series includes letters to the editors of various publications, journal articles, poetry and other writings by McCall, along with a small collection of writings by others. The Portfolio Series contains clippings, copies of advertisements and scrapbook contents relating primarily to McCall's early career. The Audiovisual Materials Series includes documentary and promotional films, commercials and radio spot announcements, especially concerning the Roe v. Wade court case and demining efforts supported by Refugees International. Oversize materials have been moved to the Oversize Materials Series.

Other materials relating to this collection may be found in the J. Walter Thompson Company Archives: Competitive Advertisements Collection; the J. Walter Thompson Company Archives: Corporation Vertical Files, the J. Walter Thompson Company Archives: Advertising Vertical Files, and the Arthur Einstein Papers. Materials relating particularly to Ogilvy & Mather may also be found in the John E. Brennan Papers, the Kensinger Jones Papers, the Robert S. Smith Papers, and the Edgar Hatcher Papers. Additionally, materials relating to Save the Children may be found in the collection African-Americans in Film: Collection of Press Books, Campaign Books, Advertising Manuals, Etc., the Africa News Service (Durham, N.C.) Leroy T. Walker Africa News Service Archives, the J.B. Matthews Papers, the Amber Arthun Warburton Papers, and the North Carolina Council of Churches Records.